Stansted Airport loses 98% of its business while Manchester is down 95% Business News

The owner of three of Britain’s main airports revealed a collapse in passenger numbers in March – the East Midlands handling so few people they could all fit on a single double-decker bus.

Manchester Airport, which two years ago was the third busiest in the UK after Heathrow and Gatwick, only handled 3,090 passengers per day in March 2021. This is a 95% drop from 66,500 daily travelers in 2019 – the last “normal”. one year before the coronavirus pandemic.

Manchester Airports Group (MAG) owns Stansted Airport, which until 2019 was Britain’s fourth busiest.

In March 2021, Essex Airport handled just 1,428 passengers per day, up from 68,000 two years earlier, a drop of 98%.

MAG also owns East Midlands Airport, which only handled 71 passengers in March, averaging 2.3 people per day, up from 8,264 per day in the same month in 2019.

The number of passengers before the pandemic at Leicestershire Airport was 3,600 times higher than in March 2021.

At present, all international travel for non-essential purposes is illegal, and anyone in England who attempts to go on holiday abroad faces a fixed fine of £ 5,000.

From May 17 at the earliest, the UK government hopes to open up international travel – but with many conditions.

Even from low-risk countries and islands categorized as “green,” travelers will need to take a pre-departure test and an expensive PCR test within two days of arrival.

MAG chief executive Charlie Cornish called for adding an unrestricted category to the planned three-stage “traffic light” program.

“The requirement to perform a PCR test on return even from the safest countries adds potentially unnecessary costs,” he said.

“Government attention must now turn to finding smarter, more affordable ways to manage the risk posed by new variants of concern.

“Where we can trust data from other countries, forcing people to spend money on expensive PCR tests to get the same information, would be a colossal waste of everyone’s money.

“After more than a year of almost total closure – and with so many jobs and so much economic value at stake – it’s really important that people get moving again once it’s safe to do so.

Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps said Tuesday evening at an aviation industry event: “There really is light at the end of the tunnel.

“It brings an opportunity, including the things we love like international travel, but also a risk of losing those hard-earned gains – especially if we have some kind of problematic variant emergence.

“We have to make sure that we don’t end up bringing dangerous variants back to the country.

“Only by creating a very strong regime for international travel will we be able to keep the nation healthy.”

But Mr Shapps predicted that UK airports and airlines would recover soon.

“I place the burgeoning aviation industry at the heart of what we need to do to ensure the success of global Britain,” he said.

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This notice was published: 2021-04-21 14:07:49